1() CONSTANTINOPLE AND ITS ENVIRONS;
approaching, and not recognizing them by any dress, supposed their intention hostile, and
prepared to attack them, when they discovered their mistake. To prevent the recurrence
of such a thing, the clergy were ordered to assume a particular and conspicuous dress, by
which they could be recognized at a distance; they, therefore, adopted one on the other
extreme: bright hats of crimson velvet, adorned with glittering crosses of gold. This is now
laid aside, and one extremely humble, but sufficiently distinctive, is substituted. That of
the dignitaries was adopted from the monks of mount Athos—a black crape veil thrown
over a plain black cap, and falling down the shoulders. The dress of the papas is a plain
tunic of blue cotton, and a felt hat without a brim, but broader on the top than below.
When he is a married man, his state is indicated by a narrow band of white muslin round
his black cap. All wear beards, which they cherish till they grow to a venerable length.
Their vestments, when performing service in their churches, are rich and gaudy.
Our illustration represents the installation of a bishop in the metropolitan church of
Magnesia : the throne is before a screen which separates the nave from the sanctuary, into
which none are allowed to enter but the clergy. This screen is profusely adorned with
pictures of saints,—an essential part of the decorations of every Greek church. Among the
priests and elders who assist at the ceremony, is one who holds a triple taper, to represent the Trinity ; with this emblem, patriarchs and bishops confer their blessing, waving
it over the heads of the congregation while they pronounce the benediction. During
this, one finger is carefully bent, so as to separate the little finger from the first and
second, to intimate that peculiar dogma of the Greek church, " the procession of the
Spirit from the Father only."
Among the display of the Greek church are banners, borne on festival days, representing favourite saints, to whose representation they attribute extraordinary qualities.
A remarkable superstition of this kind prevails at Magnesia : St. George, the patron of
England, is in high esteem there, and at Easter his banner forms the most distinguished
object in the procession. It has the important property of distinguishing and punishing
a sinner; it is borne to church always by a priest, who of course passes the ordeal
uninjured and with credit; but on returning, it is given to some unfortunate layman, who
bears to the grave the marks of the chastisements inflicted on him for his sins. He is
violently beaten by some persons appointed for the purpose, while the blows are faithfully
believed to proceed from the image of our pugnacious saint.